We were at Chishingtan Beach and wanted to find a place to eat. We asked at the Family Mart if there were any restaurants near us. She told us about a restaurant called Mu Ming. The clerk told us the restaurant did not have a menu “does not have a menu”. Well, that caught my attention. So off through the streets, we set off to find a restaurant with no menu.
On my June visit to Taipei, I went to Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall. Completed in 1980 as a memorial to the former leader of the Republic of China it is still a popular tourist destination. With the change in views of Chiang Kai-shek, feelings and the impressions of the hall have shifted. The open area is now known as Liberty Square and this year the government has announced the Hall will be changed to face “history, recognizing agony, and respecting human rights.”
Once again I visited Taipei. This time I stayed near Ximan at a hotel called Cheers Hotel. It is located near Ximan’s market an area with lots of bars, restaurants, and movie theaters around it. The Red House used to be a market built in the Japanese days. Now it is a theater and has a large gay business community around it. I visited the remains of Nishi Honganji. Nishi Honganji used to be the largest Japanese-style Buddhist temple in Taiwan. Then I went to Chang Kai-shek Memorial Hall but that is its own post. Later I went to play darts and got a drink. It turns out that I am still bad at darts. And by drink, I mean absinthe served in a skull shot glass.
It was not the best of weekends. Like many weekends in Hualien, it was raining and cloudy. As a rule of thumb it is nice and sunny when I am at work, and today it is raining when I am not. Undeterred we took a scooter up into the mountains to try Sun-Shine Mountain Tea Shop that I have wanted to visit for a long time. The first part of my interest is of course tea. The second part was what the view would be. So up the mountain, for a warm cup of tea we went.
One day after waking up early I decided to go for a walk. Off to Liyu Lake, I went. Liyu Lake is in Shoufeng, Hualien. Liyu in English means carp and is also the name of the mountain next to it. In addition, it is a great place to walk and you can see a variety of insects, lizards, birds, and sometimes monkeys.
It seems like an established thing in my life that I go to Taipei once a month. Anyway, I said at a place called Rose Boutique Hotel near Taipei Station. I met up with my friend Jaydenn for dinner. I met Jaydenn when I was in University and if it was not for her I probably would not have thought about going to Taiwan. You can see Jaydenn’s blog here (it is in Chinese but the pictures are cool).
If you did not know, I love history. It was the one subject I was good at in school. So when I visited Tainan I was excited to visit the National History Museum of Taiwan. The museum opened in 2011 and has about 60,000 artifacts. It covers Aboriginal, Dutch, Spanish, Chinese, and Japanese influence on the island.
The museum is best viewed from the top floor and working your way down. On the top floor is the special exhibits. When I went the exhibits were on New Migrants,Food in Taiwan and on the 2.28 incident.
I spent a weekend in Tainan. If you say Tainan is a pretty city with great food you would be right. I stayed at Art Station x Residence and explored some of the City and ate some good food. I went to Ten Drums cultural Villiage and to the National Museum of Taiwan History. Unfortunately, I had some phone problems so there are not that many pictures
Farglory Ocean Park is built into the side of a mountain to the south of Hualien. It has rides [A LOG RIDE], dolphins, sea lions, a manatee, fish, sharks, and otters.What’s not to Love? Tickets are normally 890 NTD ( about 30 USD) fortunately my ex-girlfriend works as a dolphin trainer so I was able to get discount tickets. She also deserves credit for most of the photos that appear in this post. I need to get better at remembering to charge my phone.
The park was opened in 2002 by The Farglory Group. The Farglory Group is a
large construction and development group. They also own multiple hotels around the island including the luxury Farglory Hotel next to the ocean park. In fact, you see an add for the hotel on screen before the dolphin show. It looks like it was the add they played at the opening of the park. Still, the place looks baller.
Anyway, the park could use a little updating in some places. It is still a great place to spend the day looking and learning about ocean animals and going on rides. A lot of signs also have English captions and Farglory has an educational angle.
Bi Han Xuan Ecological Museum ( 碧涵軒帝雉生態館 ) is a pheasant farm in Yilan County Taiwan. Yilan County is above Hualien County and is an easy train ride. After a lengthy adventure to get a scooter we were off to the pheasant farm. Su’ao is the closest big city that has scooter rentals, I found this out the hard way. Luodong and Yilan are farther away and are bigger cities. Photography is not allowed inside so all the pictures are sourced from online or Bi Han Xuan’s website.